The first day brought check in, an amazingly quick knee replacement for Phil, and hour upon hour spent in waiting rooms. People watching proved to be fascinating and very much reminded me of certain classroom behaviors. I went home tired but happy; Phil came through with flying colors.
The second day brought visiting time, better navigation of hospital corridors, and physical therapy sessions...more classroom like behaviors exhibited! Again, I went home tired buy happy.
And on the third day? Well, on the third day, God created overwhelm. I arrived to find a disgruntled patient, who infomed me that the powers that be decided he needed at least one more day in the hospital, due to a slightly elevated white count and a temperature of 1 degree above normal. He kept repeating, "One lousy degree!" Just after figuring out the logistics of getting the patient home, one lovely woman decided we should begin going through the after care instructions, all 7 pages of them, with one full page listing every possible worst case scenario which would necessitate an immediate call to 911.
Well, crud. (Insert somewhat stronger language here, but this is a family friendly blog.) I had thought through a lot of it, but not this. Not breathing difficulties. Not embolisms. Not blood clots. Not a lot of other stuff.
I know I forgot to breathe. I know I forgot to take it one step at a time. I know that tons of people had it far worse than I did. But, overwhem had me firmly in its grip. And, overwhelm decided to tighten its grip just a bit more, creating a 61 year woman sporting a deer in the headlights look.
In addition to the 7 pages of instructions, 2 pages of exercises with more to come, I had my marching orders to go buy a night light, order the special embolism, blood clotting prevention stockings ( I just made Amazon $50 richer!), instructions about getting the meds filled, instructions about setting up home therapy.
Oh, dear Lord!
I went home tired.
I did not go home happy.
Thank you, God, for my awesome kids who talked me down off my cliff, helped me go about getting what was needed, etc. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
Within a short time of getting home, I remembered both to breathe and to tackle it all one step at a time.
And, now, the patient is home. We are beginning to settle into a new normal, a new routine.
Pathways have been cleared for the business of using a walker. Physical therapy routines are nearly established. My son runs out for the basics of milk and orange juice. Things are not in "normal" spots, and I find myself futiley reaching for certain things, only not to find them.
I don't generally know what day or what time it is; I just go about getting things done.
Boring, mind numbing days in general, but I'm thankful for them, for what they are not...no 911 calls, no emergencies. Just healing and finding our way.
Life is good.